How to Get Away from an Attacker

The idea of someone using force against you is terrifying to think about. However, it can affect anyone, regardless of sex, racial background, age, or apparent fitness level.
This article presents some tips to assist in an escape from an attack, and abolishes some myths on the issue. No matter who you are, being informed and prepared about such situations is important to your safety.


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    Always remain aware of your surroundings. Periodically look around at everything which is going on. If anyone seems threatening, find safety immediately! Remember, being "aware" doesn't mean glancing behind you while you are walking to your car. It means noticing everyone, everything they could do to you, and everything you could use to defend yourself.
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    Always appear confident. Attackers usually choose their targets carefully. Never appear weak or threatened. Keep your head erect, and shoulders back. This might help prevent an attack in the first place.
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    Always think "what if." Never feel it's impossible that you will ever be attacked. In other words, stay prepared. In being prepared, it will to keep you safe.
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    Keep your car keys in your hand. Find the key that you need before approaching your vehicle--preferably chicken
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    Chicken before even leaving a safe location. Plus, look around, making sure that nothing looks suspicious, like someone watching you.
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    Walk fast across parking lots. But, watch for vehicles that may be passing, and turn to make sure that nobody is behind you. Before you get into your car, quickly check your back-seat out, even though your door was locked.
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    Be prepared to defend yourself. Let us say that someone comes up behind you and grabs you. What should you do?
    • A lot will depend on how tight a grip that the person has on you. If the attacker is behind you, one move would be to slightly bend your arms, bring both arms back, letting your elbows slam in to the attacker's rib cage as hard as you can--don't hesitate!
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    Run. If you are weaker than the person attacking you, don't try to stand and fight; the idea is to get out of the situation that you are in. Don't slow down. Once you are free, run.
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    However distressing the situation, it is sometimes in your best interest to cooperate. They are prepared for your resistance more than anything else. Cooperate until you know for certain that you can get away or attack and be successful, if you have already been kidnapped. If you have not been captured, the best option is to run.
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    Don't be afraid to be loud or rude. Manners don't matter when your life is on the line.


  • Keep in mind that keys can be used as a weapon. A key can be used to jab at an attacker's eyes; by holding a key firmly between your first two fingers, using your thumb underneath to steady it, strike out at the attacker with your key, holding the keys in whatever manner that feels comfortable to you. Do not hesitate.
  • If you are concerned with being attacked, you ought to put time aside for running and weight training practice. These routines will increase your endurance for skills needed when escaping (or, if the situation calls for it, fighting).
  • Be sure to check the self-defense and weapon carrying laws which are applicable in your country or state. You cannot always legally carry a weapon, and using one even on an attacker may be seen as unjustifiable. Check the legal acceptability of these issues before carrying a weapon.
  • Make it a rule to pay attention to your rear view mirror. You could have someone following of whom you need to be perceptive. If you think that you are being followed, turn down several side streets, watching to see how long that the car behind you makes the exact amount of turns. If it still appears that the person is following you, by all means, stay where there are lots of people and lights. Better yet, drive towards a police station.
  • If somehow you DO end up with an attacker in your car, telling you where to drive and threatening you with a weapon, before you get to an isolated area (which is probably where he wants you to go), remain calm and attempt to activate a signal on your car which will be inconspicuous to the attacker, but may cause officers to attempt to pull you over. It is very likely that your attacker will panic and tell you to continue driving, or that they will accept for you to be pulled over. If that is the case, it depends on the officer and the area's laws as to if they will require you to step out of your vehicle or not. Simply blurting out that you are being threatened by the person in the backseat may end with you being stabbed or shot, regardless of the presence of the police officer.
  • Only fight if you really need to (id est, if you are grabbed). If you suspect you are being followed, do not immediately run, but inconspicuously increase your pace, and/or go into a public venue which will allow you to be visible to other people.
  • Alternatives to weapons include mace or pepper spray. These are non-lethal weapons which are usually acceptable to carry anywhere and are not prohibited by properties which do not allow weapons. Again, check your local laws before arming yourself.
  • Your car can be a good defense against a person that wishes you harm. If someone reaches for your door handle, trying to get inside your vehicle, don't hesitate about starting your car and pulling off.
  • Knock over things if you can, but don't spend extra effort. Your most useful strategy is to keep running without halting in a place that you cannot be easily noticed by other people. Keep running until you come to a public establishment.
  • Keep your cell phone close while driving, in a place easy to get to, just in case you are being stalked or followed. Be prepared to call the police.
  • It is easy for someone to pop a door latch, or lock, on a truck, or car if they know what they are doing. Should an alarm sound,it may be ignored by those who hear it, as they do not wish to get involved with the situation or they believe it is a false alarm.
  • Some people say that you should never hesitate about running up and knocking on someone's door, if you are being chased. However, many people scare at the idea of someone making a lot of noise at their door, and may not even respond. If they do respond, it would not be quick enough to help you escape an attacker.
  • Adding on to finding someone in your car: If you are in a well-populated area (at least not isolated), try breaking the law. Speeding, leaving your blinker on, running red lights, anything to get you pulled over by a cop. But be mindful of your situation and if this is appropriate or within your limitations.
  • It is very wise not to go to your own home, because attackers will know that you live there, and may plan a further attack in the future. Also, it is disadvantageous to have to deal with unlocking doors or opening garages, when you are pressed for time. Your own home, especially if you live alone, is most likely not very well guarded against intruders.
  • Don't forget to scream the word "Fire" if you're in an area that it would serve a purpose, meaning that you could be heard. It is a better strategy than shouting "Help," which is not always taken seriously. If you feel that it will not assist your situation, save your energy, for you most likely may need it.
  • Prepare yourself beforehand. Be wise of your surroundings while outside of your home or safe environment. Have a plan of escape or self-defense which you may implement in such situations.
  • Do not go back and look for your attacker. Do not try to seek out someone to fight, especially when you are alone. It is stupid and reckless, and while you think you may be catching them off-guard, the situation may prove otherwise and end poorly for you.


  • Stay away from parking by a van that has sliding doors. Someone could easily, grab you from behind and pull you inside the van. When a potential victim is loading groceries, they will have their hands and arms full, leaving them an easy target. If you are very concerned about this, you ought to have an associate assist you with your items.
  • Should someone put their car in full-stop to ask for directions, stand several feet away from their vehicle. Be courteous and smile, be polite and tell them what they need to know.
  • Don't make the common mistake of faking sick or crazy. It may scare an attacker, but it will not deter them from you. The people who plan abductions and attacks have thoroughly planned and steeled themselves against any forms of resistance you may offer.
  • Just because you must be careful on-line or out in the open does not mean that you ought to be jumpy and rude towards other people. Being aggressive will put forth a bad (and perhaps, incorrect) impression of who you are to other people. As a general rule, always be courteous and polite when speaking to others. If giving out information on a web-site, be sure that it is secure if it lets others know your bank information, full address, or social. City, State / Province and country are acceptable, but do not give out governmentally identifying information which may allow others to easily track you.

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Categories: Self Defense